Dan Morgan on Czech Modernist Book Design


Manage episode 307272111 series 2416011
By Nigel Beale. Discovered by Player FM and our community — copyright is owned by the publisher, not Player FM, and audio is streamed directly from their servers. Hit the Subscribe button to track updates in Player FM, or paste the feed URL into other podcast apps.
Dan Morgan is the proprietor of an antiquarian bookstore in Prague 6 that replicates the feel and function of a living room. Back in the 1990s Dan was invited by his future wife to visit Prague. He never left. In 2008 he 'got into' books thanks to a woman who sold them in his neighbourhood and who introduced him to Czech modernism and Samizdat. Coming full circle, by good fortune he was able recently to buy the entire stock of her original bookstore. I met with Dan at his shop. We talk about the cultural evenings he hosts, about the unheard stories that people tell of Prague's past; the important role Cubism played in moving Czech book design from Art Nouveau to Modernism; book designers Josef Casek, Ladislav Sutnar and Jaroslav Svab; the huge influence of renaissance man Karel Teige ('Captain of the Avant-Garde') and his ABC book; Jindřich Toman's amazing monographs on Czech modernist book design, notably the one on photo montage; Toyen; visually striking books; a collector's intuition; and the quality, but inexpensive, books produced by state-run publishing house Dru stevní Práce.

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